Condition: Excellent

Chinese Shiwan (Shekwan) Ware | Su Wu with Fan and Fly Whisk | 20th/Century

Su Wu, courtesy name, Su Ziging, came from Duling, and was a high-ranking minister known for his loyalty and sincerity. He was an attendant in his father’s military staff, and was eventually appointed Leader of Court Gentlemen, entrusted with diplomatic missions.

In this extremely large figure, Su Wu is poised with his turquoise glazed fan and white glazed fly whisk, (Ruyi), in his hands which were considered instruments of dandyism in Chinese culture. His white hair is beautifully detailed throughout, as is his face, including his large eyebrows. There is a beautiful deep coloration of his garment, with blue, green, and accents of yellow ochre accenting the figure. Under his robe is a white shirt that has nice detailing. His face and hands are unglazed. The final prominent feature is his large straw hat, (douli), meaning one-piece bamboo hat.

Su Wu’s steadfast loyalty to the Han was recounted in numerous songs, poems, and plays throughout Chinese history. In painting, he is most popularly depicted as a lonely shepherd tending his sheep, epitomizing his refusal to work for the enemy.

Condition: Pristine and excellent: no chips or missing elements, repairs or crazing. This figure has an impressed stamp of “CHINA” on the bottom, indicating this piece was made between 1890-1919, after which time the mark changed. 4-3/4”w x 13-1/2”h (12.0cm x 34.29cm).

Additional Information: 

Please refer to our Discovery section for historical information on Shiwan Ceramics | Mud Figures, and our Book section, for out- of-print books for sale on the subject.


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